Bankruptcy, Business Restructuring and Creditors Rights Law

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Legal defense and enforcement of business creditors' rights in bankruptcy and other courts

Financial institutions and other business creditors look to our bankruptcy and business restructuring lawyers to both defend them and enforce their rights in bankruptcy and other state and federal courts, and to advise them when restructuring is the best solution to a problem loan or financial relationship.

Whether the job is to maximize the recovery from an insolvent debtor, negotiate the restructuring of a valued but troubled financial relationship, or defend a client from claims by a debtor, competing creditors, or the government, our bankruptcy and business restructuring lawyers bring seasoned talent with insight into the pathways for resolution of these challenging disputes.

Our creditors attorneys offer a full range of legal services, including:

  • Business Bankruptcy Law.
    Legal representation of secured and unsecured creditors and other interested parties (such as landlords) in all aspects of business reorganization and liquidation proceedings, including prosecution of claims, relief from stay, sales of assets, and the prosecution and defense of adversary litigation. Our business attorneys have experience in federal bankruptcy court, state court, insurer insolvencies, and state court receiverships.
  • Loan Workouts and Business Restructuring Law.
    Legal representation of lenders in workouts of distressed real estate and commercial loans. Our attorneys analyze relevant loan and financial documents, consider any permitting and environmental issues, and work with the lender to develop and implement a strategy tailored to the lender’s workout or restructuring objectives.
  • Complex Corporate Foreclosure Litigation.
    Complex foreclosure litigation and related permitting, environmental and condominium law issues. We frequently represent lenders in the enforcement of security interests under the UCC.
  • Commercial Lending Attorneys.
    We provide advice and counsel on a broad range of commercial lending transactions.
  • Regulatory and Compliance Law.
    Our regulatory and compliance attorneys represent banks, lenders and other regulated financial service providers at the administrative level and in court.
  • Investigations.
    Our team includes the recently hired former United States Attorney for Vermont, with extensive experience in criminal and regulatory enforcement investigations.

Recent Bankruptcy, Business Restructuring and Creditors Rights Victories:

  • When a non-profit company that had contracted for the fit-up of a specialty aircraft was faced with an incomplete project and a contractor without means to complete it, our team devised and executed a plan to enable completion of the project in place, while reducing insolvency risks to the client.
  • When a manufacturing group concluded that it needed to close a unionized paper mill facility it had operated for a long period, without creating any financial risk to the other companies in the group, our team with other specialists from inside and outside Downs Rachlin managed all aspects of the successful shut-down, including labor, environmental, tax, pension and bankruptcy issues, all without collateral damage to the remainder of the group.
  • When an out-of-state railroad’s liability insurer failed while the railroad was still relying on the failed insurer to pay claims, and the reinsurance on these claims was also in jeopardy due to the failed insurer’s conduct, our team helped the client to negotiate a complex multi-party agreement that secured for it the benefits of the insurance to the fullest extent possible.
  • When a financial institution’s safe investment in commercial paper turned out to have been sold to it by a company put into bankruptcy by the SEC because it was operating a Ponzi scheme, our team led the bankruptcy litigation that resulted in recovery of credit insurance by the client, despite competing claims from other parties.
Director Andre Bouffard

Andre D. Bouffard


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Attorney Kimberly Butler

Kimberly M. Butler


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Director Zaw Win

J. Zaw Win


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Bankruptcy, Business Restructuring and Creditors Rights

Lenders Must Follow Their Own Security Agreements Covering Non-Borrower Collateral or Lose the Collateral

The Vermont Supreme Court has traditionally had very little sympathy for banks who do not follow their own lending agreements to the letter and then ask for court relief when they end up in litigation with a borrower. This theme was reinforced in a recent decision.
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